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Their next contact was about six minutes later, when O'Neal stuck out a leg, tripped up Wade and drew his second foul.
That was the only way to stop Wade early.
The NBA's leading scorer was simply dominant in the first quarter, going 8-for-10 from the floor and finishing with 19 points and three assists, staking Miami to a 40-29 lead.
Of course, no lead is safe against Phoenix, which shot a ridiculous 10-for-11 in the opening 10 minutes of the second quarter -- yet never held the lead, trailing 67-61 at halftime.
O'Neal was traded for Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks, who were traded again last month for Jermaine O'Neal and Jamario Moon. And the two newest Heat members -- not including Luther Head, who was signed Wednesday but wasn't with the team against the Suns -- teamed up on Shaq in the third quarter.
O'Neal had position under the basket, only to have his shot blocked by Moon. Shaq got the ball back and ran over Jermaine O'Neal for an offensive foul.
Miami shot 65 percent in the third period, and closed on a 12-5 run to take a 104-95 lead into the final 12 minutes.
Notes: O'Neal was 9-4 in his first 13 trips to Miami as an opponent, and even used his Twitter feed during the afternoon to invite fans to find him on South Beach. If they did, he said he'd give them tickets. ... It was the fifth time the Heat had two 20-point scorers off the bench, and second time this season. ... Heat C Mark Blount remains away from the team; he left earlier this week for a family funeral. ... Head is expected to practice Thursday and be in uniform Friday at Toronto.
Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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